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Clinical Trial Summary

While conventional cigarette use continues to decline among youth and young adults, e-cigarette (EC) use is on the rise. Specifically, the investigators will conduct a randomized control trial (RCT) where young adults are randomized to one of two conditions: 1) a regulated ad environment, with high impact EC ad features removed or 2) an unregulated ad environment, with high impact EC ad features left intact. Participants will view EC ads embedded in an online magazine 24 times over the course of 6 months. EC experimentation and sustained use will be the primary outcome of interest.


Clinical Trial Description

While conventional cigarette use continues to decline among youth and young adults, e-cigarette (EC) use is on the rise. The use of ECs during young adulthood, particularly 18 years of age, is especially alarming because it is not only a critical period in development but also a time when tobacco use is established. Additionally, the tobacco industry targets individuals of this age with the hope that they will one day progress to using combustible cigarettes. Advertising may be one of the reasons leading young people to use ECs, and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) now has the authority to regulate EC advertisement features. The goal of the proposed study is to determine which EC ad features most strongly influence young adults' attitudes, susceptibility, and intentions to use ECs, and determine if the restriction of these ad features influences EC attitudes, experimentation, and sustained use. The investigators will experimentally estimate the causal effect of restricting high impact EC ad features on tobacco use behavior. Specifically, the investigators will conduct a randomized control trial (RCT) where young adults are randomized to one of two conditions: 1) a regulated ad environment, with high impact EC ad features removed or 2) an unregulated ad environment, with high impact EC ad features left intact. Participants will view EC ads embedded in an online magazine 24 times over the course of 6 months. EC experimentation and sustained use will be the primary outcome of interest. Findings from this study will provide public health officials important and urgently needed information as to what advertising features are contributing to the sharp rise in the use of ECs among young adults, and if restrictions reduce the use of ECs among young adults. ;


Study Design


Related Conditions & MeSH terms


NCT number NCT05207033
Study type Interventional
Source University of Massachusetts, Worcester
Contact Elise M Stevens, PhD
Phone (774) 455-6684
Email [email protected]
Status Not yet recruiting
Phase N/A
Start date April 1, 2022
Completion date January 1, 2023

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